Oh the tangled webs general managers weave.
In July of 2010, then-Astros-GM Ed Wade swapped franchise ace Roy Oswalt to the Philadelphia Phillies in exchange for J.A. Happ, Jonathan Villar, and Anthony Gose. He then immediately tossed Gose up to Toronto for Brett Wallace, the first in a line of top prospects who were meant to replace also-dealt franchise icon Lance Berkman. Pretty much none of that series of moves worked out for anyone involved.
To make a long story you may already know (or probably don’t care about if you didn’t know) short, Gose failed to live up to his tools as a position player, managing just an 81 wRC+ in 1,252 Major League plate appearances. Last July, he got into a shouting match in the dugout with his Triple-A manager Lloyd McClendon, and was demoted to Double-A.
Continuing to flounder, Detroit decided to try something drastic, and converted him to the mound. In a short stint with the Tigers’ A-Advanced affiliate, Gose, a southpaw, showed a 99-100 MPH heater and struck out almost 12 batters per nine innings. Exactly two weeks ago, on November 30, the Texas Rangers signed him to a minor league deal.
He’s a long shot, but Houston must have liked what they saw in a small sample. And, hey, stole him from the Rangers, right? For a tiny financial risk, maybe Houston has found a serviceable, flame-throwing lefty reliever. If he has any success in that role with Houston, we can call the Oswalt trade our win, am I right? Right.
In less fun news, Houston lost pitching prospect Eliser Hernandez to the Miami Marlins. It’s probably nothing to worry about; he hasn’t even sniffed Double-A yet and isn’t liable to stick, but if he does, he’s probably a reliever long-term anyway.